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Symposium 2011

Implementation - Adapting farming to a changing climate

The Challenge

In policy discussions of climate change, mitigation has been the main focus to date but adaptation to climate change is moving up the policy agenda. Simulation models suggest that the negative effects ...

In policy discussions of climate change, mitigation has been the main focus to date but adaptation to climate change is moving up the policy agenda. Simulation models suggest that the negative effects of climate change disproportionately fall on the developing world. Some argue that such effects have already started to become visible in the form of agricultural damage, displacement of people by floods, etc.

The Pacific island of Vanuatu is modifying its farming practices to cope with climate extremes.

Project goal: Food security and coastal preservation

Project size: Vanuatu and 11 other countries in the Pacific island region

Project duration: 2009 to 2015

Project volume: around 27 million euros ($33.4 million)

The South Pacific island of Vanuatu is hard hit by floods, cyclones and coastal erosion. Weather extremes due to climate change are on the rise, with sea levels climbing and food and water becoming scarce. The majority of the island’s population depends on natural resources for their livelihoods with agriculture, forestry and fishing the main job-providers.

That’s why the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation is financing measures on the island to ensure food security. For instance, on the island of Pele, a new breed of pigs is being reared that can withstand higher temperatures. On the main island of Efate, new cultivation methods are being tested and robust cabbage and potato species are being planted. Within the framework of the International Climate Initiative, the German federal ministry is also funding projects on the coast of Efate to preserve mangroves and protect the shoreline.

 

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